Moore, Martin Express Support for CBA for Turner Field
(APN) ATLANTA — At the Monday, February 06, 2017 Full Council Meeting of the City Council of Atlanta, Councilmembers Felicia Moore (District 9) and CT Martin (District 10) expressed their support for a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) for the Turner Field redevelopment.
Moore and Martin–who are both running for Council President in this year’s municipal elections–made comments following over an hour of hearing students and community leaders criticize the Council for allowing the sale of Turner Field to go forward without a CBA.
In addition, Councilman Ivory Young (District 3) addressed the advocates at length and met with them in the hallway.
“I know we’re gonna get back to this CBA issue, and I’ll just quickly say that I do support a Community Benefits Agreement on making sure that we work with it,” Moore said.
“I do hope that those who are more involved and can speak on it would speak on it, because otherwise we’re going to continue to have people come down here,” Moore said.
Moore was apparently referring to Carla Smith (District 1), whose district encompasses the directly impacted communities; and possibly other Councilmembers such as the three At-large members (Michael Julian Bond, Mary Norwood, and Andre Dickens) or Keisha Lance Bottoms (District 11), who, in her dual role as CEO of the Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority, was intimately involved in the sale.
“I will get the contact information,” Moore said, gesturing towards the advocates in the audience. “I don’t mind expressing my opinion as one Councilmember to the President or whomever else,” Moore said, apparently referring to Georgia State University President Mark Becker.
GSU is now owner of the some of the Turner Field property, while Carter and Associates owns another portion.
“But As Mr. Cardinale pointed out, if there’s something collectively done here we have to agree to do that collectively,” Moore said, referring to comments made by the present writer and Editor of Atlanta Progressive News.
“I think there may be other opinions and other information that you may or may not want hear from other Councilmembers as to whether we would want to engage in that. But as one Councilmember I will,” Moore said.
“I want to say to Mr. Ward, I support the CBA agreement,” Councilman Martin (District 10) said, referring to community activist Columbus Ward.
Councilman Young told Mr. Ward, Sherise Brown, and others in the hallway–with APN in attendance–that he wanted to see if the Turner Field Community Benefits Coalition or a new entity could incorporate that he said might have more authority to speak for the public.
However, the Coalition states that they are already a broad coalition that invited the participation of all residents and neighborhood stakeholders in Summerhill, Peoplestown, and Mechanicsville.
Suzanne Mitchell, who left the Coalition and negotiated directly with GSU and Carter, purportedly on behalf of the Summerhill neighborhood, has expressed satisfaction with the deal as is, with slim community benefits and no meaningful affordable housing.
The Coalition states that they have been meeting and developing their desired CBA over a period of over two years, including by conducting a broad survey and participating in the Livable Centers Initiative; and that the Coalition’s leadership was elected by the members.